- Parent Category: FAQs
- Category: Bible Questions and Answers - other
- Published on Thursday, 19 November 2009 10:01
Yes, this understanding of the phrase lends meaning to the passage.
A number of commentators indicate that the expression, "ye have known God - or rather are known of God" is equivalent to "ye are saved." This is in contrast to the previous verse, when, in their unconverted state, they had no knowledge of God and were in bondage to idols. Now, how ironic that they were saved and yet had
turned to another form of bondage, keeping the ceremonial law!
There may also be a further thought in Paul’s adding, "or rather are known of God." He may be noting, in contrast to their reliance on their own initiative in keeping the law, that salvation ("ye have known God") was the result of God’s initiative toward them ("rather are known of God"). They responded to God’s initiative then and are to likewise respond to God’s initiative by the Spirit’s work in their daily living.
Understanding the expression to mean the same as in 1 Corinthians 8:3 may further extend Paul’s argument and may more completely fit the context. Paul goes back to their salvation ("ye have known God") and to their happy condition at that time ("known [approvinglyl of Him"). When they were enjoying God’s smile on them, they welcomed the message of salvation apart from the law (verse 14), enjoyed true blessedness, and would have given him their eyes (verse 15). Instead of enjoying such divine favor, they had now gone backward through their subjection to the ceremonial law.